Career and Job Search Guide

News Analysts, Reporters, and Correspondents

Correspondents, reporters and news analysts investigate news and report it to the public through various mediums. Many analysts provide their opinions on news stories.

News analysts, commonly known as anchors or newscasters, review and report their analysis. Many anchors report news on television or present live reports from sites where news is occurring. Correspondents usually report news specific to individual cities.

To find and learn more about news stories, reporters conduct interviews, follow up on tips they receive, and review information they collect. Some are required to take pictures at sites where news is occurring, as well as keep meticulous notes while conducting news investigations. Reporters are then responsible to write about what they have learned, decide what their focus will be, and if they have done any videotaping, they need to spend some time editing. Because of advances in technology, many reporters can submit their stories onsite using laptop computers. Some reporters, known as newswriters, report news after reviewing information located by other reporters. Reporters that work for television stations, sometimes prerecord introductions for their news stories to present in conjunction with a live report. Reporters that give their own views on news stories are usually known as commentators.

Anchors working for gigantic television stations often specialize in a particular area of the news. Those who report on weather conditions are known as weathercasters. These reporters are responsible to collect information about local, national, and international weather conditions and report them to their respective audiences. Those with special training in meteorology have the ability to make predictions about future weather conditions after reviewing the necessary data. Anchors working as sportscasters cover and report on sports.

Reporters responsible for writing about various events, known as general assignment reporters, could write about or cover any of the following events: political events, accidents, well known people visiting town, and other stories considered newsworthy. Larger media outlets require reporters to collect information about topics important to citizens, such as education and criminal activities. Other media companies assign reporters to cover specific areas such as international relations, cultural events, community events, politics, as well as various topics important to residents. Investigative reporters conduct investigative work, sometimes taking long periods of time, before reporting their findings.

Certain news organizations provide reporters with flexibility, so they can cover an assortment of stories. Employees working in groups to cover stories could include photographers, editors, anchors, camera operators, and graphic specialists.

Anchors or reporters working for smaller media companies usually have a variety of news duties. For example, these reporters are sometimes assigned to write stories, take pictures, and edit news reports. Many have administrative and sales duties.

Work environment. Reporters, anchors, and analysts often have chaotic work days since meeting deadlines is very important in the news business. Occasionally, anchors are given very short notice before a news broadcast. Many workers in the news business are provided cozy offices to do their work in while many work in loud newsrooms. Likewise, many reporters must work in distracting environments such as accident sites. Since reporters often cover wars and news in countries with unstable governments, covering the news can be dangerous.

The hours reporters work depends on the type of news company they work for. Those working for papers delivered in the morning, usually work afternoons to late evenings. Those working for television and radio companies usually work during the days or nights. Reporters working for magazines usually have regular day schedules.

Since news can happen anytime and usually deadlines are not flexible, it is not uncommon for a reporter to work when not scheduled to. Many reporters must travel and work erratic schedules. Because many news organizations have 24 hour operations, a reporter can be assigned to work anytime during the day.